Post-launch Report, and GOG Keys

Hey Folks!

It's been approximately 30 hours since NEO Scavenger launched, and things are looking pretty good, overall. There were definitely some hiccups with the coordinated launch across 8 different sites. Some went off without a hitch, while others straggled., in particular, probably wins the award for most on-time launch. And they were the ones with least amount of prep time. Good job, guys!

As of now, I think all sites are up-to-speed. Desura is having technical issues with the client build updater, but the standalone builds are updated to v1.0. I apologize for the delay to those users. It was a coincidentally bad weekend to choose for a launch, as they were updating their tech!

One question has come up a lot, and I want to address that before anything else.

Will existing customers get GOG keys?

This is something I hadn't thought of, mainly because GOG was such a sudden addition to the list of launch stores. I like the idea of giving keys to existing customers. That's part of the reason I supported Desura Connect, and allowed customers both here and on Desura to have cross-play.

However, with the addition of Steam, and later, other stores, the picture became a lot more complex. I was able to give Desura and Blue Bottle Games customers Steam keys, but there was no way to give Steam customers keys to Desura or here without opening up an infinite loop that users could exploit to get unlimited keys. And unfortunately, I think GOG may be a similar case.

It's possible there may be a way. However, I'm hesitant to promise something that I cannot deliver. So unfortunately, no way to get GOG keys right now. But I'll be sure to post news if that situation changes!

How is NEO Scavenger doing?

I think it's going well! It probably isn't going as crazy as some of the other popular indie games, but it's definitely pulling its own weight. Based on sales so far, I think I should be financially secure for the near future. Enough for me to concentrate on making games instead of fundraising.

More importantly, NEO Scavenger seems to be well-received among players! People seem to really like it, despite the quirks and idiosyncrasies. I was honestly worried that upon release, the game would reach a wider audience that didn't like the niche flavor of the game. But I'm happy to report that the majority of feedback is still positive! (And thankfully only minor bugs!)

Today was mostly spent working on emails and replying to messages. A lot of messages piled-up yesterday and today, and I'm trying to get control of them again. The situation is hampered a bit by requests for review copies from press outlets that have no published contact info. Like many indies, I'll get emails from addresses like "[email protected]" claiming to be from a YouTube channel or site. And many times, the channel/site doesn't list the contact email, so I can't tell if it's legit. I still try to chase down some way to verify, as I want to help out the smaller reviewers. It's just time consuming.

The good news is that some pretty major names are among them, including a certain Yogscast channel :) (This one was easy to verify, as the address matched.) Plus, RPS and PC Gamer featured more NEO Scavenger!

Tomorrow looks to be a lot like today, as I catch up on the various messages and sites. Have a good night, all, and see you tomorrow!


Banjo's picture

Congrats on the launch, mate! Well done, and thrilled people like the game as much as us old-time testers and supporters.

I'd definitely love a GOG key at some point... that's my site of choice by far. Maybe you could manually give a key to those who buy through your website directly rather than use some kind of automated system if you're worried about "infinite keys". I believe that's what a lot of indie devs do (Dead State, for example).

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matsy's picture

I'm going to have to find a new blog to read over lunch :(

linibot's picture

I was actually thinking the same thing! XD With launch so recent the steam forums are enough to keep coffee breaks busy, but yeah, I did love the daily development updates so very much, they were a fascinating window into the dev process. I selfishly wish Dan will decide to keep up with some sort of regular news updates when things get back to normalcy, even if they aren't daily, though I realize it's a big time commitment.

NEO Scavenger: FAQ
10 Ways (not) to Die - A beginner's guide

dcfedor's picture

Thanks Banjo! And that might be a good compromise. It definitely makes sense to reward those who supported the project directly. Speaking with GOG, however, it may not be enough keys to cover even that group. I might have to do something like first-come-first-served, a random draw, or limit the reward to Yukon customers. And if that's the case, it might be less controversial to just leave it as-is. The last thing I want is to piss anyone off :)

@matsy and linibot, I'm wondering how this will go, too. So far, my plans are to keep doing the devlog (except on vacation). However, it might end up being fairly boring or spoilerish, making the posts redundant. I'll have to see how it pans out.

For now, though, I figure I'll keep up with it. I know more than a few read it like you guys, and it helps me keep track of my progress, too!

Dan Fedor - Founder, Blue Bottle Games

Scavenger's picture

I wouldn't mind blog updates, even spoilerish ones - as I assume, such would regard new installment of Neo Scavenger series, they would allow some input from the community. Especially useful during certain issues, balancing, several options of handling certain elements of mechanics.

Plus, as you've pointed out, we simply like reading fresh news posts, especially when bored and having some free time!

Banjo's picture

As a proud Yukon owner, I wouldn't complain about being among the supporters who paid a bit more and thus got a GOG key, of course. :)

Limiting keys to (now unavailable) Yukon buyers would prevent the problem of post-release buyers here wanting keys too... and it *was* the "limited collector's edition", after all! (where's my Melonhead bobblehead?). That said, I'd certainly support GOG keys for any (Yukon or otherwise) longtime BBG buyers if it were possible; the folks who bought from you direct (rather than middlemen), especially since there was never any indication NeoScav would ever be on GOG until after release.

Again though, I'm curious how Dead State (as one example) managed it; they asked us all to post our order numbers from their site after launch and say if we wanted a GOG or Steam key. That included both those who bought on their site and their original Kickstarter, too, so surely that's not a small number. Are GOG really that stingy with giving devs keys? Maybe us longtime GOG'ers (I started with them when pretty much all they had for sale was classic Fallout!) need to have a word with 'em!

In truth, for NeoScavenger, having a GOG copy is less important than most other indie games, since my buying on your site gives a DRM-free version already (the main reason I choose GOG). But I guess for me, it's a matter of loving NeoScav *SO* much that I hate not having it in my GOG library to show off! :P

Whatever happens, I promise I'll be far less "pissed off" than when I had to rebuy both Shadowrun Returns and Wasteland 2 on GOG again to get DRM-free versions, after the devs initially said they would only *ever* have Steam releases. :(

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Maklak's picture

A lot of people asking for game keys, saying the're youtubers, are scammers. The basic idea is to make multiple email accounts that look like they belong to some let's player from youtube and ask developers of recently released / soon to be released games for steam keys, preferably several. Then sell the keys. (BTW, C4n 1 h45 1? (That was a joke:) )

Some more on the subject:

linibot's picture

As someone who actually follows Gamasutra, the Rampant Coyote and generally the indie gaming scene, these articles somehow had escaped me. An interesting (if depressing) read. Thanks for the link.

NEO Scavenger: FAQ
10 Ways (not) to Die - A beginner's guide